Getting an internship is a great way to get some real-world experience before heading into the workforce for college students in Texas and across the country. However, employers who bring on these interns must adhere to applicable employment laws at the state and federal levels. An intern who worked for the Olsen twins has filed a class-action lawsuit in a court in another state, accusing them of non-payment of wages and violating wage and hour laws.
The plaintiff worked for the Olsens' company, DualStar Entertainment Group, as well as for their fashion label, the Row. For four months, she claims that she worked 50 hours per week without pay. Her duties included administrative work, such as organization, photocopying, and running errands. She alleges that she was doing the work of three interns and was expected to respond to emails all day, including late into the evening.
On one occasion while working at the fashion label, the plaintiff was working outside when the temperature was nearly 100 degrees. In the extreme heat, she claims she was forced to carry heavy clothing. This eventually led to her becoming dehydrated and taken to the hospital.
The plaintiff maintains that, when she had a moment to take a break, she was not permitted to do so. Instead, she was told to continue working and complete mundane tasks to keep busy. Not only was she not allegedly given any pay for the overtime she worked, but she did not even get academic credit hours. Interns in Texas and elsewhere can be exploited when they do not know their rights. If the conditions of an unpaid internship are no longer met and an intern remains unpaid, the company may be violating wage and hour laws.
Source: inquisitr.com, "Olsen Twins Being Sued By Interns For Long Hours And No Pay", Aug. 13, 2015